Poetry Contest

FAQs for TCCC’s Second Annual Poetry Contest


What kind of poems are you looking for?

Any kind you wish to submit. Free verse, sonnets, haiku, limericks—everything is fair game.

Who can enter?

Any student enrolled in a TCCC class can enter.

Do I have to read my poems at Open Mic Poetry Night?

A commitment to read your Open Mic Poetry Night is not required to enter the contest, but we encourage everyone to participate! You do not have to sign up to read in order to attend the Open Mic Poetry Night.

How do I sign up to read at Open Mic Poetry Night?

Visit the Writing Center in McSwain Annex 150 or email us at writingcenter@tricountycc.edu.

What kind of prizes are awarded?

One grand prize winning poem is selected and usually 2-4 honorable mentions.

How is the poetry judged?

A judging panel of literary-minded faculty and staff is invited to read the poems, which are stripped of identifying information prior to judging. Each judge assigns each poem a rating for overall best quality. The scores are then averaged to determine the highest ratings.

I hear that you publish a poetry anthology. Will my poem(s) appear in it?

Publication of submissions is not guaranteed.

How many poems can I submit?

Up to five poems.

Do I need to tone down language, violence, mature themes, etc. in my work?

We seek thought-provoking work with intellectual depth and recognize that good writing often tests the boundaries of “acceptable” language. However, gratuitous or excessively explicit violent images, strong language, and sexual episodes that distract the reader from more important themes in the work should be avoided.

How do I submit my work?

Email it to the Writing Center at writingcenter@tricountycc.edu.

What is the deadline to submit poems?

Friday, March 23.

When is Open Mic Poetry Night?

Thursday, April 12, at 6:00 p.m. in the McSwain Lecture Hall.

Do I have to read an original poem at Open Mic Poetry Night?

No, you can also read a poem by a favorite poet. Just be sure to include the title and author of the work before you begin reading.